What is a “Knowledge Organiser?”
Knowledge Organisers contain all the key information that your children need to know and remember within a particular topic. We sometimes refer to it as “the sticky stuff”. It doesn’t cover everything that will be taught and it certainly doesn’t provide any opportunities to develop particular skills of a geographer or historian etc. Nevertheless, Knowledge Organisers include the key facts and knowledge that the children are expected to learn and retain such as dates, significant people and definitions.
How do we use Knowledge Organisers in school?
In school, we do weekly quizzes with the children to help them retain and recall key information from topics. Research tells us that if information isn’t revisited regularly, it is quickly forgotten. So when we quiz the children, we not only ask questions about the current topic but also about previously taught topics so that we are constantly revisiting this information and helping to embed it into our long term memory.
How can I use Knowledge Organisers at home?
- When completing any kind of topic based home learning, the Knowledge Organisers can be referred to for key information.
- If you are able to ask questions or make up quizzes based on the information in the knowledge organiser, this will really support your child’s learning and help them to commit key facts to memory. Remember to not only ask questions about the current topic but also previously taught topics.
- Children can read through the Knowledge Organisers and write their own questions. Then, without referring to it, they can try and answer the questions they came up and then check their answers independently.
- Children can make up questions to ask a sibling or grown up to test their knowledge – this will help children to pick out key bits of information.
- Write a passage about a topic leaving gaps for the children to fill in – either by referring to the Knowledge Organiser or from memory e.g. The Great Fire of London started on ________. It started in a baker’s shop in _____________.
Educationalists Mary Myatt and Tom Sherrington share that schools should,
‘Use Knowledge Organisers’ (or your school’s equivalent) for catch-up teaching and quizzing, so that pupils are taught the most important things they need to know.” This is particularly relevant at this time after partial school closures. Year Groups will inform parents through Google Classroom and Parent Hub when Knowledge Organisers are on the website and Google Classroom so that they can be used at home to consolidate topic learning.